NEWSWEEK International Editions: Highlights and Exclusives, August 13, 2007 Issue

Aug 05, 2007, 01:00 ET from Newsweek

    COVER: Beijing Rising. (All overseas editions) Beijing Bureau Chief
 Melinda Liu reports that the 2008 Olympics will be a massive coming-of-age
 party for the world's newest economic superpower. The transformation of
 Beijing is emerging as perhaps the most ambitious remake of any major world
 capital in history, short of the postwar reconstructions, with Beijing's
 rulers now permitting ultramodern designs long shunned as bourgeois or
 Western. The problem is that, with the 2008 deadline looming fast, even
 Beijing can't quite control the process of demolition and construction. The
 basic concern is how to balance costly environmental projects against the
 raw need for economic growth.
     (Photo: )
     Draftsmen's Contract. Senior Editor Cathleen McGuigan reports that
 Beijing is becoming the epicenter of innovative design in China. While
 architects in China have rarely had to worry about a lack of work, it
 tended to be grim with most designers toiling in government institutions.
 Now a surprising new climate for sophisticated architecture is developing,
 most visible in the cutting-edge commissions for the 2008 Olympics that are
 helping to inspire a design counterculture within China.
     Surge of Suicide Bombers. Baghdad Bureau Chief Babak Dehghanpisheh and
 Chief Foreign Correspondent Rod Nordland report that the number of Iraqis
 being killed continues to rise and most of the deaths are the result of
 what has become an epidemic of suicide bombings. Yet, the majority of the
 bombers are not Iraqi. National-security adviser Mowaffaq al-Rubaie says
 that Saudis account for half of the suicide bombings in Iraq, with Iraqis a
 distant second. That's one of the reasons why the Bush administration's
 plan to sell $20 billion in arms to Saudi Arabia and the Gulf emirates has
 come under fire.
     The Great Farm Revolt. Special Correspondent Akiko Kashiwagi writes
 that the strategy of Ichiro Ozawa-whose Democratic Party of Japan defeated
 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in upper house
 elections- that only his party cares about the nation's forgotten
 countryside worked, delivering 60 percent of rural voters and handing the
 LDP its worse loss ever. But then comes the tricky part to see whether
 Ozawa's brand of class-or, more accurately, geographic-warfare will work as
 well in government. Ozawa's political strategy carries huge risks and if he
 hopes to become Japan's next prime minister, then, he will have to rethink
 his strategy.
     First Ladies' Club. Special Correspondent Tracy McNicoll reports that
 after three months in "office," C�cilia Sarkozy, who thought she would be
 "bored" as first lady, is transforming the role and has set herself apart
 from her predecessors in France and from the current crop of European First
 Spouses, who steer clear of public affairs. She is emerging as a rare
 figure in Europe-an American-style First Lady, combining glamour and
     The Italian Bill Clinton. Special Correspondent Barbie Nadeau reports
 that allies and adversaries alike say Rome's Mayor Walter Veltroni-who has
 been called an Italian Bill Clinton-has embraced a moderate pragmatism that
 rises above the squabbling endemic in Italian politics. He has kept the
 budget in line, increased tourism, revved up the local economy and hopes to
 bring his touch to the prime minister's office. Italy wants someone to pull
 the nation together and if he can win his own party leadership, he offers
 some hope for stability that would be radically new.
     WORLD AFFAIRS: 'A Double-Edged Sword.' Benazir Bhutto, the exiled, two-
 time Pakistani prime minister, is negotiating for her political comeback
 with President Pervez Musharraf, who needs her support and that of the
 Pakistan People's Party, arguably the most popular political force in
 Pakistan. She says that while there's been widespread speculation, neither
 side has officially said any meeting took place, though both sides have
 confirmed that there are negotiations going on. "Right now I can only say
 I'll be back before the end of the year," she tells Newsweek.
     GLOBAL INVESTOR: Lessons From Motown. Senior Editor Daniel Gross writes
 that while Wall Street blames regulations like Sarbanes-Oxley for the fact
 that it's losing global market share in initial public offerings, it never
 looks to its own high costs. Like U.S. auto companies, Wall Street has
 ignored foreign competition, and continued to maintain a high-compensation,
 high-cost model in the face of cheaper foreign competition. So rather than
 compete based on price-as Wall Street urges every other industry to do-Wall
 Street firms (like Detroit once did) are looking to the government to help
 them reverse declining market share.
     The Truth About Denial. Senior Editor and Science Writer Sharon Begley
 examines the history of denial of global warming. For more than 20 years,
 well-funded naysayers, who still reject the overwhelming evidence of
 climate change, have obfuscated the science of global warming, misled the
 public and provided cover for policy-makers to not do anything.
     WORLD VIEW: Why Fattah Is Not The Answer. Jeremy Greenstock, director
 of the Ditchley Foundation and a former British ambassador to the United
 Nations, writes that the Middle East Quartet (made up of the United States,
 the EU, the United Nations and Russia) has many wondering whether the
 stalemate between Israel and Palestine can really be broken. "Supporting
 Fattah just because it recognizes Israel suffers from a fundamental flaw:
 the movement is corrupt and unelected and has been rejected by the majority
 of Palestinians. It will never alone represent enough of Palestine to
 strike a lasting settlement with Israel," Greenstock writes.
     THE LAST WORD: The Politics of Blackmail. Saif al-Islam al-Qadhafi, the
 best-known son of Libyan ruler Muammar Kaddafi, is playing a key role in
 building Libya's ties to the West and was the main negotiator in a deal
 last month that freed five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian intern in
 exchange for millions of dollars and a nuclear cooperation deal. "Maybe. It
 is blackmail, but the Europeans also blackmailed us. Yeah, it's an immoral
 game, but they set the rules of the game, the Europeans, and now they are
 paying the price ... Everyone tries to play with this card to advance his
 own interest back home."

SOURCE Newsweek